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Broke the Koch Brothers' Takeover of America
eXiled Alert! / January 27, 2011
By Yasha Levine


Yes, the Kochs are everywhere. Even under our feet.

See that plush red and blue carpet cascading down the steps of the United States Capitol building, framing President Barack Obama as he makes his historic inaugural address? It’s made from material manufactured by a Koch Industries subsidiary called Invista.

Yes, that’s right. You heard it here first: Charles and David Koch made the carpet used in Barak Obama’s swearing-in ceremony. Liberals might have worshiped the ground Obama walked on, but the Kochs owned and manufactured the carpeting covering that hallowed ground.  What makes it all so creepy is that just a month after that carpet was rolled up and Obama took his place in the White House, the Koch brothers launched the Tea Party revolt against their carpeting client.


While this rank little oligarch-irony has evaded the American press corps, the Kochs have not been keeping it secret. They bragged about it in an April 2009 company newsletter, which was later published on their website:

INVISTA helped make history when Barack Obama was sworn in as the U.S.A.’s 44th president.

The red and blue carpet cascading down the steps of the U.S. Capitol and underneath the presidential podium was Bentley Prince Street’s King’s RoadTM carpet, made from INVISTA’s Antron® LegacyTM fiber.

Several thousand yards of Bentley carpet (the same type used for the inauguration) have been purchased for installation in the Koch Tower in Wichita.

Invista, purchased by Koch Industries from DuPont in 2003 for $4.4 billion, is one of the world’s biggest producers of polymers and fibers, and  is best known for brands like Teflon, Lycra, Stainmaster and Coolmax–a material you’ll find in socks made for REI-shopping liberal eco-yuppies. Charles Koch, who rules Koch Industries with an iron fist, bought Invista during a period of frenzied expansion. In 2005, he took control of Georgia-Pacific, a paper and pulp giant that makes Brawny towels, Dixie cups and a whole range of products we use on a daily basis, for $21 billion—with $13.2 billion of it paid in cash.

That’s the reach the Kochs have and the kind of money they can come up with, which shows you just how powerful the billionaire brothers have become in recent years.

The weird inaugural carpet situation adds to the creepiness of it all, as if the Kochs were sending out a message to Obama and the country: “You might not see us and you probably don’t even know we exist, but we’re everywhere. We manufacture the ground you walk on, you stupid fucks. So no matter who you are or what you believe in, chances are you’re buying our products and filling our coffers with your cash, and we’ll recycle that cash back into political campaigns that fuck you even harder. So thank you for your business. And come again. Or don’t–what do we care, you won’t know when you’re doing business with us anyway. ”

The Kochs were obviously mighty pleased with themselves for getting Invista this kind of high level product placement. They put the exact same type of carpet into their own offices to celebrate and mark the occasion. I wouldn’t be surprised if a framed photograph of Obama standing on the Koch carpet is hanging up in Charles’ office for everyone to see. This one would be perfect, for example:

Obama family on Koch carpet

Hell, it would even look good in those customized Christmas cards the Kochs no doubt send to friends of the family like Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas every year:

Koch brothers Christmas Card -- Obama Family on Koch Carpet

But Obama and his family weren’t the only ones striking poses on the Koch carpet. Bush and his cripple mentat Cheney were also spotted lounging, along with Obama and Biden’s bald spot, on Invistia’s plush Antron® LegacyTM fibers.



For your viewing pleasure, here are a few more photos of the Koch carpet from other vantage points:






Yasha Levine is an editor of The eXiled. Levine and co-editor Mark Ames first broke the connection between the Tea Party and the billionaire Koch brothers in in February 2009, sparking lawsuit threats, and causing CNBC’s Rick Santelli to publicly distance himself from the Tea Party movement and cancel his Daily Show appearance.

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Add your own

  • 1. Harnonymous  |  January 27th, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    It’s just a dumb carpet. And I’m just a dumb humorless libertarian. Or in the parlance of our times, a “libertard.”

  • 2. f34d4ds  |  January 27th, 2011 at 5:48 pm

    As long as it isn’t made of Uzbek cotton, no one cares.

  • 3. burbl  |  January 27th, 2011 at 10:06 pm

    What makes it all so creepy is that just a month after that carpet was rolled up and Obama took his place in the White House, the Koch brothers launched the Tea Party revolt against their carpeting client

    Excellent job as usual The Exile(d)


    WTF does it matter?
    Trade isn’t love, trade is trade.

  • 4. Jon  |  January 27th, 2011 at 11:58 pm

    Anything is possible, but I get the feeling that this is self-satire. Funny watching the libertarians take the bait, though.

  • 5. my talkative ringpiece  |  January 28th, 2011 at 12:11 am

    Stupid fucking yuppies.

    Wanna see a Palo Alto yuppie turn green? First you gotta catch a live one, so hunt for ’em at a farmer’s market and catch ’em while they’re buying something “organic” and “local”. Then engage ’em in conservation, you know, saving the Earth and all that. Mention that saving the Earth may just involve their stopping driving their Volvo and 2 SUVs and airplane trips, watch ’em turn green. Be ready to step quickly out of the way if your yuppie vomits.

    Me? Oh, one of the millions who willingly or not are Not Playing Any More. MY sox aren’t from REI, they’re from a garage sale, US Army wools, a whole bag of ’em from a semi-retired test pilot, no shit. Most everything I own is obtained from garage sales, “finding” (I find all kinds of stuff on the friggin’ road everytime I walk or bike, it’s like getting paid to in vise-grips, ratchets, and crescent wrenches) because I can’t afford nice new ChinaKoch stuff even at Wal-prices, I’m doing more to fight the bastards than any 10 yupiets – I’m not buying.

    Might as well paint some yup’s name on every bomb dropped on children Over There, but you won’t find mine, I’m making something like 1/3 the income I’d have to make to even pay a dollar in tax. I’m not buying gas these days either, although honestly I’m hoping a small motorcycle is in my future – my gas use will go up, to a level consistent with use of US-only sources.

    Carpet’s unsanitary anyway. I don’t understand why anyone has the stuff in their house, storing up 20 or 30 years’ worth of dandruff, scabs, food crumbs, snot, piss, etc. Carpet disgusts me and it should disgust you. Bare floors, wood, bamboo, linoleum, anything, work great. No more musty smells. Wear outside shoes outside and comfy slippers or booties inside, like civilized people. Carpet is a racket.

  • 6. H. Khariq  |  January 28th, 2011 at 6:03 am

    For a small fee I’d be willing to nod my head in agreement at this, whatever it’s supposed to mean.

  • 7. maus  |  January 28th, 2011 at 12:45 pm

    “Wanna see a Palo Alto yuppie turn green? ”

    FWD FWD FWD FWD: “I totally owned this liberal [in my head]”


  • 8. doug  |  January 28th, 2011 at 5:20 pm

    @5 “my talkative ringpiece”
    While I feel like I might not like you that much in person, your little story about finding stuff reminds me of a nice little moment in my life this past summer. I was on my yearly bike camping trip, trundling along the Columbia River lamenting the fact that I forgot my needle-nose pliers. You never know what you’ll need needle-nose pliers for on a week long bike trip in the wilderness, but the chances are you’re going to need them.

    I had already passed the last town I would ride through in four days ten miles back. Oh well, I thought. Hopefully I won’t need them.

    Literally twenty seconds after that, I found a pair of needle-nose pliers on the shoulder of the road! Who woulda thought? Later that day I found an orange on the side of the road that was delicious. Well, delicious might be the wrong word for it. It was big and attractive but the interior was more waxy than anything else. I think it wasn’t organic. I mean “organic.”

  • 9. my talkative ringpiece  |  January 28th, 2011 at 9:34 pm

    OK I was trying to cram a lot into a post, basically, if Koch etc are making all this money on carpet, What if carpet goes out of style? Nope American’ts will keep on bitching and keep on spending thousands on carpet. My post won’t help the germ-catching shit go out of style.

    Doug, I’m sure I’d hate you in person. Come on, we’re American’ts here, we don’t talk in person. Any time we interact with another person and there isn’t a bank teller’s window, a fast-food facade, etc between us, it’s a fight or a fucking, not discourse. Let’s all sing: You hate me…. I hate you….

    On the “road scores” it’s amazing. There’s probably some quirky living to be had by combing the roadsides of my smallish town. Tools, parks, nuts, washers, wheel weights, severed hands, gold rings…. and yeah, the set of vise-grips I found was just in time because the set I got for $1 at a garage sale are AWOL right now.

  • 10. John Figler  |  January 29th, 2011 at 1:45 am

    You can’t live out of vise-grips and needle-nose pliers.

    But you can find enough food to raise a 12 son family just digging in the garbage cans of supermarkets. Eventually you’ll have to fight for the right to pick first with the hobos and the likes, but, ey, the food is perfectly edible, and you’ll find one day eating things you would haven’t allowed yourself otherwise.

  • 11. Arch Stanton  |  January 29th, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    Hey man, that rug like really tied the inaugural together.

  • 12. my talkative ringpiece  |  January 29th, 2011 at 10:43 pm

    Figgy my boy, you’re preaching to the choir and thank you. I don’t actually dig dumpsters right now, but I have in the past for packing and shipping materials back when I had a business. I know all kinds of good stuff lurks in dumpsters. Right now there is still a lot of food being tossed out. If anyone needs it, it’s out there. It won’t always be. I’m growing, gathering, and do a lot of home-cooking so my diet’s great now compared to when I was a “good citizen”. I also know that soon it won’t be possible to gather outside of our own land boundaries and those may need defending too. Going out and digging, and gathering, and growing, on a “hobby” level now, will help prepare you for later.

  • 13. Charlie Koch  |  January 31st, 2011 at 3:58 pm

    I just wanted to take a moment to apologize to everyone for my poor taste in carpet installation. Rest assured, it will never happen again.(But just wait for the upcoming St. Peter’s Basillica Grand Re-Opening! That Palin penguin paisley pattern will really pop!) Thank you all for your concerns, and best wishes to you and yours in the bread line.

  • 14. Alan  |  March 28th, 2011 at 7:42 am

    There’s a metaphor here for the present corporatist-state now in-the-making. What isn’t clear from this is that they are presently pulling the carpet out from under us.

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